Check the employment agreement for any relevant provisions, including provisions on the process to be followed on how a variation is to be carried out. A breach of contract can occur if an employer changes a job description without renegotiating with the union. Website design & developed by FWeb. If you have a collective contract, your employer must negotiate any changes with your union. My employer wants to change around the shift calendar, effectively splitting comfortable workers up that chat too much in his opinion. Employers who follow a careful change process will reduce their chances to claims of: There are standard rules that apply to all change processes, these cover: Employers have a right to make changes to their businesses, and structure their business in the way that they believe will be the most effective to deliver to their customers and their strategy. My manager will not allow me to do this on secondment therefore I will need to resign my current permanent post for this position even though they will replace my … For example they may seek to change … Many employers in New Zealand struggle to keep up with employment law changes. This is especially the case if your employer is trying to change fundamental terms in your contract. Please confirm your agreement to this change by signing in the space below and returning the signed copy to me no later than 5pm, Tuesday, 20 July 2016. It’s important for employers to use good hiring processes, and for everyone to follow minimum rights and responsibilities. Variation clauses will only generally allow reasonable changes and even if there is a variation clause, if you are unhappy you may still be able to “protest” the change and seek legal advice. Can a person who has an appeal in process with the Immigration and Protection Tribunal (IPT) wait in New Zealand? Employment contracts that have been negotiated through a union normally contain stipulations that protect the rights of the employee from arbitrary and capricious changes in the conditions of employment. If you do agree, it must be part of your signed, written employment agreement before you start work. I am happy in my current role (and do a very good job) and I don't seek a higher position as I have young kids and know that I can't dedicate more time or energy yet. New Zealand’s Wages Protection Act requires employers to remunerate workers according to the day, frequency and intervals agreed on in their employment contract. In the meeting, tell the employee what the proposed changes are and provide a copy of the proposed new agreement. To do so would place the party making the change in … Can I get a refund for my application fee? Any variation to the contract must be done by agreement and in conformity with any provision in the employee’s employment agreement about how the agreement is to be varied. Hello, Can my employer change my job title/role, without ffering a new contract or job description also a salary to meet the requirements of this new position especially if this is a promotion not a demotion. A contract of employment is a legal agreement between the employer and the employee. Regardless of why the employment relationship is ending, the correct procedure must be followed to ensure the process is fair and reasonable. Employment agreements that provide for redundancy compensation usually include a clause to say that the employee will not be entitled to compensation if they choose not to transfer their employment in a technical redundancy situation. When a fixed-term contract (an employment contract with an end date) is about to end, the employer can offer the employee a new contract with altered or new employment conditions. Relocation – your rights and responsibilities Change in the workplace can often be difficult. This is because of the very simple reason that a Contract of Employment constitutes an agreement between two people, and the one party to the agreement cannot change the terms of that agreement without the consent of the other party. Your employer may ask you to do a 90-day trial in a new job. Where a trade union is recognised, negotiations to change contract terms should be through collective bargaining. An employer cannot hire a fixed term employee without having a good reason. It doesn’t matter if new employees have different terms and conditions to existing employees. Your employer can not force you to change your signed agreement. Changes to a contract of employment. If agreement can be reached, the new agreement should be recorded in writing and the employee asked to sign the agreement. Employers must be able to show that any proposals that could affect jobs must be for genuine business reasons. Still haven't found what you're looking for? Employers should only use these clauses to vary a contract if they have a good reason, for example the business is struggling financially and needs to cut staff hours. The best way to prevent and resolve relationship problems between employers and employees. In some situations, a change of job description requires negotiation with the employees or with a union. Workplace change is not a way to avoid managing individual employee performance issues. You should always seek professional advice before taking any action in relation to the matters addressed. See more information on restructuring when there’s a sale or transfer of work. So it … This article, and any information contained on our website is necessarily brief and general in nature, and should not be substituted for professional advice. If the changes also touch on your salary and other terms or conditions that the employment contract stipulated, suing the employer for a breach of contract with the help of the lawyer would be an excellent idea. My professional registration in New Zealand has been declined/revoked; On a working holiday, can I stay with my employer for longer than 3 months? Following the termination, the employer can then offer a new employment contract to the employee that reflects the reduced level of wages. Unilateral changes in a fixed-term employment contract. If this is not permitted the employee may have a right to a redundancy. For existing employees (i.e. A contract of employment is an agreement between you and your employer that outlines the rights and duties of both sides.. At some stage your employer or you might want to change your contract of employment. Agree to meet a few days later. Coercing someone means to use fear, intimidation, force or threats to make someone do something against their will. This section provides help in some key areas. If a business or part of it is to be sold or transferred to another party the employer has to follow a set of rules that apply to the transfer of work. If the employee refuses to accept the variation, the employer could make the employee’s position redundant provided it first follows a fair and proper procedure and can show clear evidence of the commercial necessity for the redundancies. If an employer is considering making a change, their first step is to look at the employment agreements and workplace policies, since these set out the basis for the employment relationship and the process for changing its terms. There may come a time at work when you need to check the precise terms of your contract of employment. Where a proposed change might affect people’s jobs, employers need to include a fair and reasonable consultation process. An employment agreement must at least contain the following clauses: It is wise to include many other clauses to this document, as it forms the fundamentals for the employment relationship. If it is a reduction in pay or benefits, or a restraint of trade has been put in place, the employer should give some “consideration” to the employee in return for the employee giving something up to ensure that the new agreement is binding. Tell the employee when you hope to introduce the new arrangement, provided they agree to it. A fair and reasonable consultation process needs to include the following minimum steps: Where a change includes a decision to sell, transfer or contract out some, or all, of the work to another party the employer has to follow a set of rules that apply to business transfers. I have been working for my current employer for 10 years. Employees in this situation will be “technically redundant” because their employment agreements with the employer who sold the business end at the time of sale, but their employment with the business will continue if they accept the offer of employment. Your employer is not permitted to alter your contract unilaterally: see Abbott v Women’s and Children’s Hospital Inc (2003) 86 SASR 1, [34]. My role is a site specific manager role but I am now getting handed duties that my previous boss (ops Manager) was doing including some nationally focussed duties. An employer can make a change ('variation') to an employment contract if: there's something in the contract that allows the change (usually called a 'flexibility clause') the employee agrees to the change; the employee's representatives agree to the change (for example, a trade union) What can I do if my contract has been breached? However, neither you or your employer can change your employment contract without each others' agreement. My employer setup a roster calendar which we've been using for 6 months now. Its terms cannot lawfully be changed by the employer without agreement from the employee (either individually or through a recognised trade union). As with most things in life, the bigger the change the greater the anxiety. Workplace change does not necessarily mean removing (also known as disestablishing) jobs (though this may happen) but it could mean that people’s jobs change. Join over 11,000 of Australia's most innovative businesses. Can I buy a business while I am working here? My role is a site specific manager role but I am now getting handed duties that my previous boss (ops Manager) was doing including some nationally focussed duties. Hello, Can my employer change my job title/role, without ffering a new contract or job description also a salary to meet the requirements of this new position especially if this is a promotion not a demotion. An employee who does not have an agreement prior to beginning work may then bargain on each and every point in the agreement, when that it presented after commencement of employment. those employed on or before 31 March 2016) businesses will have until 1 April 2017 to make any required changes to their employment contracts. But lowering wages has its risks, including breach of contract claims, unfair dismissal claims, and potential breaches of minimum entitlements. All about pay, hours at work, record keeping and what breaks employees are entitled to. Workplace change can also be known as restructuring. They can’t tell you to “take it or leave it,” or threaten to fire you unless you agree. Section 343 of the Fair Work Act prohibits an employer from coercing an employee to entering a new employment contract. The process must be fair and equitable. Clear workplace policies and procedures support employment agreements and mean everyone knows how things are meant to be done. It is unlawful to unilaterally make changes to an existing employee’s terms and conditions of employment, and therefore the trick is to ensure to get your employee’s agreement. Insolvency and employment. Further, you are not obliged to agree with any variation proposed by your employer: see Howtrac Rentals Pty Ltd v Thiess Contractors (NZ) Limited [2000] VSC 415, [417]–[424]. Emphasise that the employer understands it cannot vary the employee’s contract without the agreement of the employee and ask the employee to consider the matter and to consider any other ideas he or she may have to solve the problem or avoid the change. Changes to your contract of employment can occur due either to a change in the law or by agreement between your employer and yourself. Re-negotiating your contract can be a difficult and uncomfortable situation for employees and employers. The procedures for how your employer should inform you of any changes to your terms and conditions are set out in the … give the employee a reasonable opportunity to seek that advice, and consider any issues that the employee raises and respond to them. You are entitled to say “no” to a proposed change. What are my rights here? In most cases a company that is feeling the pinch and wishes to make cutbacks on certain entitlements such as car allowances, travel allowances, will attempt to make these changes ‘across the board'. Laws are amended, new legislation gets introduced and the obligations employers have to meet can shift and change. If the re-negotiation is not successful, the employee may either be stuck with an unsatisfactory contract or look for employment elsewhere. I recently applied for a position which will allow me to progress but is only for 2 years fixed term. Where a trade union is recognised, negotiations to change contract terms should be through collective bargaining. It’s not an uncommon question. Consider, and take into account, the responses before any final decisions are made about the business. If you can prove that the change of job description is adverse, the lawyer would have no problem helping you convince the court. Reinforce your negotiated agreement can an employer change contract without consultation on the key is there is an independent help your consent. Can My Employer Change Me from Hourly to Salary? If your contract states your employer can amend any term of the contract, this may be far too wide–ranging and unspecific, so the employer could not change your contract without your agreement. A contract of employment is a legal agreement between the employer and the employee. Employees become entitled to annual holidays, public holidays, sick leave, bereavement leave, parental leave and other types of leave as long as they meet certain conditions. Generally speaking, an employer can change a job description whenever it is convenient to the company. A contract starts when as an employee, you accept the employment offer. The first consideration for the Court is whether there is a mobility clause in the employment contract which allows your employer to unilaterally change the location of the workplace. Therefore, if an employer coerces you to sign a new contract by threatening to terminate or demote you, or change your employment status, you can make a claim to the Fair Work Commission… Employers. You do not have to agree to a trial period. Unilateral variations to duties can be justified by the employer if they are broadly within the role for which the staff member was employed. An employee who does not have an agreement prior to beginning work may then bargain on each and every point in the agreement, when that it presented after commencement of employment. You can’t ‘restructure’ to ‘get rid of’ an employment problem – these must be handled in the correct way. If you think that your employer may have changed a fundamental term in your employment contract, or has proposed to change a fundamental term, you should speak with a contract attorney. A contract of employment is a legal agreement between the employer and the employee. An agreement can be drawn up between the original employer and the host. An employment contract must be agreed upon by both parties, and any attempt to force an employee to enter into a new contract is unlawful. Conditions you can change. If you want to negotiate, talk to your employer before you sign the agreement. It can be tricky to get employees to agree to changes that they don’t see as necessary. To do so would run the risk of a personal grievance being raised by you. As a general rule, contractual terms cannot be varied without the consent of both of the contracting parties. Contracts of employment form the basis of working relationship between the employer and employee, but if the contract remains unsigned, it does not give either side a chance to change the provisions. However, the employer cannot withdraw an offer of employment once it has been accepted. There is no law setting out an exact consultation process to follow when entering into an agreement to vary an existing agreement, but the following process is suggested. Find out if you can change these conditions. Any proposed change or variation to your contract should be negotiated (discussed) with you. You must enable JavaScript to submit this form. At the meeting, go through the proposed agreement with the employee and explain the reasons for the need for change as far as is reasonable. If an employment contract contains a ‘variation term', the employer is allowed to make changes to particular parts of the contract without having to consult with you beforehand. The Employment Relations Act 2000, section 65(2) sets out the required contents of an employment agreement but otherwise provides section 65(1)(b) that the agreement may contain such terms and conditions as the employer and employee think fit. If the employer wants to change an important I have been working for my current employer for 10 years. ® Ministry of Business Innovation and Employment, Calculating payments for holidays & leave, Psychometric testing and assessment centres, Things an employment agreement must contain, Offering and negotiating employment agreements, Code of good faith in collective bargaining, Local council Easter Sunday shop trading policies, Problems getting domestic violence rights, Leave and pay entitlements during COVID-19, COVID-19: Guidance for payroll professionals, Employment New Zealand's approach to COVID-19, COVID-19 Workers and Workplaces Assistance Fund, Public, sick, bereavement, alternative pay, Changes to tax legislation for employee share schemes, Holiday and leave entitlement and payment ‘must-knows’, Positive conversations and reaching agreement, What are ethical and sustainable work practices, Demand for ethical and sustainable work practices, End-to-end assurance systems and processes, Identify and minimise labour rights issues, Assessing the impact of structure change on jobs, Restructuring when a business is sold or transferred, The benefits of being a disability confident organisation, Plan to become a disability confident organisation, Disability information and resources for employers, Resources and government support for disabled employees and jobseekers, Employers who breached employment standards, restructuring when there’s a sale or transfer of work, Applying for employment relations education course approval, Wage subsidy and Leave Support: Complaints about employers, Calculating payments for holidays and leave, Employer's approach to assuring ethical and sustainable work practices, Franchisor's approach to assuring ethical and sustainable work practices, Recruiters and employment brokers approach to assuring ethical and sustainable work practices, shifts in customer or market requirements, Before any final decisions are made, circulate the business proposal for change to all employees likely to be affected, Give employees reasonable time to respond, comment and suggest other options. Write to the employee and ask him or her to attend a meeting (time and date) to discuss the proposed change. the names of the employee and employer concerned; and, a description of the work to be performed by the employee; and, an indication of where the employee is to perform the work; and, an indication of the arrangements relating to the times the employee is to work; and, the wages or salary payable to the employee; and, a plain language explanation of the services available for the resolution of employment relationship problems, including a reference to the period of 90 days in section 114 within which a personal grievance must be raised. Many union contracts state very explicitly what duties are associated with various positions. Your employer may ask for you to agree to changes which you are not happy with or are unfavorable for you such as cutting your hours, lowering you pay, changes to your place of work without giving you a benefit such as a payment for the change. If your employer has explicitly promised that it won't change certain terms of your employment or won't fire you without cause, that's an oral contract. My manager will not allow me to do this on secondment therefore I will need to resign my current permanent post for this position even though they will replace my position. You should: consult or negotiate with employees or their representatives (for example from a … Reinforce your negotiated agreement can an employer change contract without consultation on the key is there is an independent help your consent. This also means the termination period can be moved forward if the employee on parental leave returns early Your employer can’t change your contract without your agreement. To do so would run the risk of a personal grievance being raised by you. There could be clauses written in 'legalese' that you may not understand (indeed, that's essentially the point of legalese) so you might need to hire a lawyer or ask a friend from a legal profession to help. The Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth) entitles you to workplace rights as an employee. new employer can change contract without consultation with the right to claims against you decide to offset any changes to the pool of employment. The problem is, you cannot simply issue new employment agreements containing different terms and conditions to existing employees. Give the employee plenty of time to discuss the matter and tell the employee he or she is entitled to seek legal advice. This must comply with minimum standards of good faith; this includes giving affected employees information about the suggested change and an opportunity to comment on it. If an employer changes terms and conditions that are not in the written ... they should tell their employees where to find information about the change. The world doesn’t stand still, it’s constantly moving and so it the environment in which businesses operate. Employment Contracts Download employment contract templates for full-time, part-time, fixed term, casual, volunteer and contractor employees from our online HR software. The workplace change process gives an outline of the process an employer should follow when working through a change. There may come a time at work when you need to check the precise terms of your contract of employment. Where there is a recognised trade union, this further agreement should be negotiated through collective bargaining. Inquire about whether they would be open to changing the terms of the contract, and … Further, you are not obliged to agree with any variation proposed by your employer: see Howtrac Rentals Pty Ltd v Thiess Contractors (NZ) … That is, one party cannot legally change the contract without the consent of the other party. A technical redundancy occurs where businesses are sold, but not by sale or transfer of shares, and employees are offered employment by the buyer on substantially the same terms and conditions. Where there is a recognised trade union, this further agreement should be negotiated through collective bargaining. I am happy in my current role (and do a very good job) and I don't seek a higher position as I have young kids and know that I can't dedicate more time or energy yet. Don’t use redundancy as a threat however; only say this if it is actually a reality. Last updated: 8 October 2020 Sometimes employers want to make changes to your terms of employment. 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